Time and time and time again over the last few months, Microsoft have emphasized that at least for the foreseeable future, they’re not going to go down the traditional exclusives-driven traditional generation approach for the Xbox Series X, instead looking to build an ecosystem that will put cross-gen support for Xbox One and its upcoming next-gen successor front and centre. Following yesterday’s Xbox Games Showcase, however, there’s little evidence to back that up.
With the exception of Halo Infinite, it looks like all upcoming first party games won’t be coming to Xbox One. State of Decay 3, Forza Motorsport, Fable, Avowed, and Everwild all seem to be coming only to Xbox Series X and PC. Various web pages for all those games initially mentioned Xbox One as a target platform for them as well, but those web pages, too, have since been updated to remove those mentions.
As such, there’s been confusion about Microsoft’s cross-gen policy, and Microsoft themselves have made some statements in response to clear up that confusion (or try to, at any rate). In a statement to The Verge, they said that all future first party games are being developed natively for the Xbox Series X, and that it’s the developers themselves who’re choosing which platforms their games will launch for (echoing a recent comment made by Xbox boss Phil Spencer).
“Our future Xbox Game Studios titles are being developed natively for Xbox Series X. We will continue to invest in tools for devs to scale across consoles. Which consoles each Studio/game can support will be based on what’s best for their game and their community at launch,” Microsoft said in their statement. A tweet by Aaron Greenberg, head of marketing at Xbox (see below), said something along the same lines.
So what exactly does that mean? That all Xbox first parties can choose to make their games cross-gen- but none of them are doing so.
Future 1P titles are developed for Xbox Series X first. Not saying those games won’t ship on Xbox One, only that we are leading with Series X & each studio will decide what's best for their game/community when they launch.
— Aaron “Day One On Game Pass” Greenberg 🙅🏼♂️💚U (@aarongreenberg) July 23, 2020